MetroHealth Community District

Cleveland, Ohio, United States

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Neighborhood Type: Mixed-Use

Size: 585 Acres

Lead Stakeholder: The MetroHealth System

Located 2½ miles southwest of Downtown Cleveland, the MetroHealth Community District is one of Cleveland’s most culturally diverse neighborhoods.

Originally the home to Central- and Eastern-European immigrants who arrived in Cleveland to work in the growing city’s factories during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, it is now the hub of Latino culture in Northeast Ohio, boasting the highest concentration of Hispanic residents in the state of Ohio.

Since the 1850s, the MetroHealth System has called the neighborhood its home. Its main campus is this community’s anchor. As the region’s public hospital, MetroHealth has long embraced its vital role in providing excellent care regardless of a patient’s ability to pay.

The growing health system has embarked on an ambitious $1 billion Campus Transformation plan, the largest self-funded county hospital project in the history of the United States. The project will support an estimated 5,600 jobs, increase household income by $360 million during construction, and add $95 million in tax revenue. Yet the transformation is not just the steel, concrete, and glass of a new hospital, it includes fundamental changes to the system’s operations and care delivery. Most important, the plan gives MetroHealth the opportunity to capture its conviction that it is more than a hospital. The system sees itself first and foremost as a member of a community and believes that it can, will, and must improve the vibrancy and wellness of its neighborhood.

MetroHealth knows that good health is not just good health care. Good health is determined to a large degree by a healthy neighborhood. MetroHealth is committed to improving health equity and playing an important part of the national movement toward partnerships between community development and health organizations to holistically revitalize communities in need. The system is a leader in measuring health impacts seeking to demonstrate the health-related return on investment of innovative community and economic development.

As part of its effort to revitalize the West 25th Street corridor where its main campus sits, the system has already established a nonprofit organization, the CCH Development Corporation, to help bring public, private, civic, and community partners together to launch, nurture, and accelerate real estate, transportation, and infrastructure projects.

Projects already in the works include the MetroHealth Line bus-rapid-transit (BRT) system, a free neighborhood wi-fi network, the La Villa Hispana Streetscape, an extension of the Towpath Trail, and the Lincoln Building rehabilitation project that includes a new home – in the neighborhood – for MetroHealth’s police department.

In order to optimize this opportunity in an inclusive, equitable, and transparent manner, MetroHealth embraces the EcoDistricts Protocol and commits to launching the MetroHealth Community District. The EcoDistrict will span approximately 585 acres and will be framed by Interstate 90/490 to the north, I-71 to the east and south, and Fulton Road to the west.

The ecodistrict will also serve as the nexus for multiple stakeholder organizations, including Cuyahoga County, the City of Cleveland, Cleveland Neighborhood Progress, the MetroWest and Tremont West CDCs, the Greater Cleveland Partnership, the Cleveland Foundation, Enterprise Community Partners, and, most importantly, the residents of the surrounding neighborhoods all endeavoring to revitalize this neighborhood toward greater resilience, sustainability, and equity.

Following the EcoDistricts Protocol, MetroHealth intends to catalyze an enduring community-driven and citizen-centric effort to usher in a new and lasting era of equitable and inclusive prosperity, security, and wellness within the surrounding community. In the words of Dr. Akram Boutros, MetroHealth’s President and CEO, “We’re not just trying to build a hospital, we’re trying to build a good life for everyone who lives here.”

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